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BBB: Don't fall victim to scams this Valentine's Day

Posted: 8:59 AM, Feb 11, 2019
Updated: 2019-02-11 10:59:41-05

Valentine's Day is this Thursday, February 14, 2019, and many people are busy shopping for their special someone. Better Business Bureau's Rebecca Barr offers shopping tips, so you stay safe from scams.

Barr says there are two big things to remember when shopping for Valentine’s Day.

"First, be sure to research the seller. Whether you are shopping online or going into a actual store. Look them up online and read reviews. You can go to www.bbb.org and see what their business profile says. In the end, just make sure you know who you are doing business with. Second, avoid making last minute purchases. When you give yourself enough time to shop, you can in some cases get a better deal and feel more confident about your purchase," Barr explained.

We all know flowers are one of the most popular Valentine's Day gifts. Barr says the BBB receives 2 to 3,000 complaints about retail florists nationally each year.

"These complaints vary from late delivery to the flowers not looking like what was advertised. That can be a common problem, especially if you are ordering your flowers online. My suggestion is to use a local florist you are familiar with or that has a good presence in your area," Barr said.

If you are turning to online dating to find your Valentine, beware of romance scams.

"Most romance scams start with fake profiles on online dating sites created by stealing photos and text from real accounts. Scammers often claim to be in the military or working overseas to explain why they can’t meet you in person. Over a short period of time, the scammer builds a fake relationship with you, exchanging photos and romantic messages, even talking on the phone or through a webcam. Just when the relationship seems to be getting serious, your new sweetheart has a health issue or family emergency, or wants to plan a visit. No matter the story, the request is the same: they need money. But after you send money, there’s another request, and then another. So it's definitely something to watch out for," Barr said.

For more resources and tips, visit www.bbb.org .